Keito Kohara, the founder and producer of artcomplex group based in Kyoto, was in town last December. He came with Junichi Suzuki, an official from METI. (Junichi’s title on his meishi is: METI-KANSAI, The Kansai bureau of Economy, Trade and Industry, A regional branch organization of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, Service Industry Office, Media and Contents Industry Office, Manager of Cultural Industry Unit.) Kansai is the southern-central region of Japan’s main island and includes the city of Osaka and Kyoto.
Why were they traveling together to New York? They decided to come to the city to look at the tkts booths here. They want to create the same system in Osaka, a booth that would offer discount same-day tickets to various entertainments to create economic impact in the area and also change the way how people might enjoy their evenings after work. It seemed that they had already started to speak with various stakeholders back in Japan and would like to open the booth this Spring.
As I always to do to visitors from Japan, I asked Keito what he is interested in lately. He said he has been following the entertainment industry in Korea. He thinks that the non-verbal performance/entertainment are more progressive there than in Japan. He told me about two performances that he found quite entertaining: JUMP and NANTA. (I found out that NANTA show came to New York a couple of years ago.)
I must say tkts is immensely popular among tourists. Visitors from Japan are highly aware that they can find a good deal by joining the line at the booth in Times Square. tkts was introduced in London sometime ago and I would like to see it happen in Japan as well. I am wishing best of luck to Keito and Junichi’s venture. (Fumiko)